Government of Canada invests to create jobs, growth and maximize economic development opportunities throughout the Kenora region

News release

FedNor funding to immediately create three full-time jobs and pave the way for up to 40 more

April 1, 2021 – Kenora, ON – Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario – FedNor

Strong municipalities and First Nation communities are key to a thriving regional economy. That is why the Government of Canada is working at a grassroots level to help them develop and diversify their economies. Through its Regional Development Agencies, such as FedNor, the federal government is investing to strengthen rural communities and enable small and medium-sized enterprises to grow and create meaningful jobs for Canadians.

Terry Sheehan, Parliamentary Secretary to the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for FedNor, today announced a Government of Canada investment of more than $770,000 to support three community economic development initiatives in the Kenora region.

Provided through FedNor’s Community Investment Initiative for Northern Ontario (CIINO), the funding will enable the Obashkaandagaang First Nation, City of Dryden and Municipality of Machin to each hire an Economic Development Officers (EDO) for a three-year period. While on the job, the EDOs will undertake a variety of priority projects that will help create jobs, support recovery efforts, strengthen key sectors of the economy, and position the region for sustainable growth and prosperity.

Northern Ontario has been hard hit by COVID-19 and today’s announcement is further proof of the Government of Canada’s commitment to families, municipalities and Indigenous communities, helping them to not just survive, but thrive. Initiatives like these will help get Canadians back to work and ensure that Northern and First Nation communities are set to fully participate in Canada’s economic recovery.


“Strong regional economies are essential for Canada’s success and sustainability. Our regional development agencies are there to help communities and businesses grow and prosper. Our government is making strategic investments, like the ones announced today through FedNor, to enable communities and businesses in all regions of the country to strengthen the local economy and pave the way for the creation of high-quality jobs for Canadians.”
- The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for FedNor

“Today’s announcement is helping to empower the communities of Dryden, Machin and the Obashkaandagaang First Nation, to take charge of their economic future, create employment opportunities and support a strong, sustainable regional economy. I am proud to be part of a government that recognizes the unique needs of Northern Ontario and is investing to ensure our municipalities and Indigenous communities can diversify, grow and achieve their long-term economic goals.”
- Terry Sheehan, Member of Parliament for Sault Ste. Marie and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for FedNor

“Moving forward with our strategic plan to grow our economy and create local jobs is a top priority for our community. This FedNor investment is allowing us to pursue on-reserve opportunities such as establishing internet and home construction businesses, as well as developing a marina and retail complex to help maximize our economic potential and create local jobs.”
- Chief Marilyn Sinclair, Obashkaandagaang First Nation

“Hiring an Economic Development Officer gives us a dedicated resource with a sole focus on implementing priority projects identified in our five-year strategic plan. We are excited to have an expert on staff that understands our economic goals and who has knowledge and experience to strengthen and grow key sectors of our economy such as tourism and small business.”
- Gordon Griffiths, Mayor, Municipality of Machin

“Having a full-time economic development professional on staff has been a gamechanger for community development, growth and job creation in the City of Dryden. We are thrilled that FedNor recognizes the importance of this role and is investing to extend the position for an additional three years so we can build on our successes and support recovery efforts.”
- Greg Wilson, Mayor, City of Dryden

Quick facts

  • The funding announced today is provided through FedNor’s Northern Ontario Development Program /  Community Investment Initiative for Northern Ontario, which enables communities and First Nations to increase the number of community and/or regional economic development initiatives implemented, leading to increased business investment, job creation, and regional collaboration and partnerships.

  • Since 2015, FedNor has provided more than $179 million in NODP funding to support 477 projects, which helped create and maintain more than 8,300 jobs in communities and First Nations across Northern Ontario.

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Catherine Mounier-Desrochers
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages

Barclay Babcock
Communications Officer

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